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Imagining New LegalitiesPrivacy and Its Possibilities in the 21st Century$
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Austin Sarat, Lawrence Douglas, and Martha Merrill Umphrey

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780804777049

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804777049.001.0001

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Coming to the Community

Coming to the Community

Chapter:
(p.84) Coming to the Community
Source:
Imagining New Legalities
Author(s):

Robin Feldman

Publisher:
Stanford University Press
DOI:10.11126/stanford/9780804777049.003.0004

This chapter argues that the fluidity of our interactions in modern society makes us particularly vulnerable and requires special attention to the protection of the individual. The battered doctrine of public and private spheres is inadequate for such purposes, and the attempt to apply that doctrine in modern contexts is producing strange and unsatisfying results. With boundaries that are more permeable than ever, individuals need the ability to maintain some type of control in modern communication and information pathways. The more difficult question concerns what type of control is appropriate and how it should be provided. The chapter suggests creating an individual right that can be described as the ability to maintain identity cohesion. Identity cohesion cannot be accomplished under the rubric of either privacy or property protection, or at least not as we have come to understand those protections under the law. Rather, maintaining identity cohesion will require a right that is both more and less than what is granted in the privacy and property regimes.

Keywords:   privacy, public sphere, private sphere, modern communications, identity cohesion

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